Itanagar/New Delhi: A massive day-night search for a transport aircraft of the Indian Air Force, which went missing two days ago, continued on Wednesday in remote mountainous Mechuka in Arunachal Pradesh’s West Siang district.The Russian-origin AN-32 aircraft with 13 people on board lost contact on Monday afternoon after taking off from Jorhat in Assam for Menchuka advanced landing ground near the border with China. IAF sources Wednesday said additional assets including two Sukhoi-30 aircraft were deployed on the third day to locate the missing plane apart from the fleet of C-130J and AN-32 planes and two Mi-17 and two ALH helicopters. Also Read – Pak activated 20 terror camps & 20 launch pads along LoCThe ground forces included troops from the Army, Indo Tibetan Border Police and state police. The two Sukhoi-30 and two C-130J aircraft will carry out night missions, they said. The IAF has been regularly updating the families of all air-warriors on board the aircraft about the rescue operation. Military sources said rescuers have not received any signal from the emergency locator beacon in the missing plane, adding there is a possibility that the device may not have been functional. Also Read – Two squadrons which participated in Balakot airstrike awarded citationsThey said the plane that went missing is yet to be upgraded with latest avionics and radars, though some of the AN-32 were strengthened with advanced systems. The Indian Navy’s P-8I aircraft was deployed on Tuesday as it has electro-optical and infra-red sensors which could be helpful in the search operation. IAF officials said ISRO’s Cartosat and RISAT satellites are taking images of the area around Menchuka to help the rescuers find the plane. They said the area has thick vegetation and difficult terrain which are making the rescue operation challenging. The IAF on Monday said the aircraft took off from Jorhat at 12.27 pm for the Menchuka advance landing ground, and its last contact with the ground control was at 1 pm. A total of eight aircrew and five passengers were on board the aircraft. The AN-32 is a Russian origin aircraft and the IAF currently operates a sizeable number of it. It is a twin-engine turboprop transport aircraft. An AN-32 aircraft had crashed near a village in West Siang district of Arunachal Pradesh in June 2009 in which 13 defence personnel were killed. The aircraft had crashed over the Rinchi Hill above Heyo village, about 30 km from Mechuka advance landing ground. In July 2016, an AN-32 aircraft went missing while taking off from Chennai for Port Blair with 29 people on board. The aircraft could not be traced following weeks of massive search operations covering 2,17,800 square nautical miles by multiple aircraft. Months later, an IAF court of inquiry concluded that it was unlikely that the missing personnel on board the aircraft would have survived the accident.
WABASCA, Alta. — An out of control wildfire in northern Alberta has prompted Cenovus Energy Inc. to evacuate its Pelican Lake heavy oil facility.The company says the fire was discovered about one kilometre away from its complex about 300 kilometres north of Edmonton.Cenovus says safety is its top priority and the evacuation and shutdown are a precaution.There was no damage to facilities or infrastructure.Suncor oilsands production back to normal by end of June following Fort McMurray fireFires to shave $928-million from Suncor’s cash flow as it looks to restart operationsAlberta Wildfire officials say the blaze is about 55 hectares in size and is being fought by four air tanker groups and a ground crew.The wildfire threat in Alberta’s forest protection zone ranges from high to very high.“We had 118 staff working at Pelican Lake when the evacuation began. The majority of them have been safely transported by bus or personal vehicle to our temporary evacuation centre in Wabasca,” the company said Tuesday in a release.“Remaining staff are being evacuated in an orderly fashion. This includes some staff who were working in the northern part of our Pelican Lake operations who are being evacuated by helicopter.”